Custom Boxes – How To Create Custom Boxes & Packaging

Recognition in today’s crowded marketplace requires unique, eye-catching ways to stand out among the competition. Creating custom packaging is a dynamic part of marketing and an innovative way to showcase a brand. Custom boxes, in particular, increase product visibility through every channel of the shipping and handling process. 

Custom boxes and packages allow businesses to carry their brand through every touchpoint of the buyer experience, leaving behind a lasting impression. 

What Is A Custom Box?

The way we shop has drastically changed since the advent of the internet. In 2019, an estimated 1.92 billion people purchased goods or services online, and the amount of purchases has dramatically increased in 2020. Online shopping produces an incredible increase in packaged and shipped goods, creating an opportunity for businesses to utilize custom-print boxes as another way to educate consumers about their offerings. 

Today, branded products and shipping boxes are essential for marketing-savvy companies. Custom packaging serves to both legitimize and advertise the organization within the marketplace. Using product boxes to boost brand visibility and enhance the customer experience is a smart strategy. 

Let’s take a deeper look into what it takes to customize boxes for product packaging and shipping…

Can You Customize Cardboard Boxes?

Yes, you certainly can! The variations available to customize cardboard boxes is nearly limitless. Cardboard packages and shipping boxes lend themselves extraordinarily well to customization in both form and functionality. Cardboard boxes protect and preserve contents while resisting folds, tears and breakage. Plus, they are available in a variety of different sizes and thicknesses. Whether you’re looking for a standard box or want to invent something original and unique, customized cardboard boxes are one of the easiest and least expensive options for creating your branded packaging collection.    

Types Of Custom Boxes

Choosing which custom box solution is right for you deserves careful consideration. While the design of your custom box is nearly limitless, the main three components of customization you’ll want to consider are: 

  • Printed boxes for your product
  • Mailer boxes 
  • Shipping boxes 
custom cardboard box

Custom Shipping Boxes

The custom box industry is booming. If you have any doubt about their popularity, consider the following: Sales for customized shipping boxes are expected to top over 35 million in the coming years.  If you ship products to consumers, you’re going to want to consider designing a custom shipping box. Not just for the sake of branding but also to remain competitive in today’s saturated online marketplace. 

There are several different factors when determining the best custom shipping box for your company. If your company has a variety of products, consider if you’ll require multiple shipping box sizes. If you’re shipping fragile or perishable items, you’ll need to work with a designer to determine thickness of the box and if any inserts or protective inner packaging is needed.

Finally, you’ll want to consider how to incorporate your brand in your custom shipping boxes. If color scheme is a significant aspect of your brand, you might want colorful shipping boxes. For popularizing your logo or tagline, consider how to include them on a package with maximum exposure. When it comes to custom shipping box design, your choices are vast, so make sure you carefully consider a shipping box that best represents you.

Specialty Boxes

Have a unique product that requires a special design? Crafting a specialty box that showcases your product can be a major factor in how your customers experience your brand. A positive customer interaction translates into brand loyalty. 

Here’s a great example of how a specialty box design can build customer satisfaction and allegiance. In an effort to get healthy, a coffee drinker started replacing their frequent daily caffeinated coffee infusions with tea. In shopping for options, they happened upon Hanger Tea, a tea that had a five star rating and multiple positive reviews. Critics talked little about the flavor of the teas, but went on and on about how much they loved the packaging. Of course, this coffee drinker was intrigued and ordered it. And guess what arrived? Tea bags on little cardboard hangers in a closet-shaped box. Now that’s great packaging! 

By designing a specialty box for your products, you’re providing added value to your customer that goes beyond the product inside. It tells customers you care about your products. This boosts recognition and loyalty to your brand and can create lots of online buzz.  

custom cardboard box

Custom Mailer Boxes

Custom mailer boxes can include many design elements and brand signifiers. Typically made of corrugated cardboard, they also offer the added benefit of protecting your products during shipping. Sending products via mail is typically less expensive than other delivery methods, saving your customers shipping and handling charges.

These days, most of our mail includes a lot of flyers we don’t have the time or inclination to review. Providing your customers with an attractive, exciting package in their mailbox is a terrific way of standing out amongst the frey while giving customers a little added boost when they pick up their mail. For example, the popular beauty subscription service Ipsy recently upgraded their custom mailer boxes to a bold pink, their brand color. Now, when subscribers go to their mailbox, they have an instantly recognizable pink box that, undoubtedly, they open eagerly. 

Custom Boxes For Small Business

For a small business, finding a way to stand out in the hectic eCommerce market can be challenging. Crafting a custom box solution is functional, and provides a relatively inexpensive, consistent marketing tool that can set them apart. 

How To Make Custom Boxes

Now that you realize the enormous marketing benefits that can be derived from investing in custom boxes, you’re likely wondering where to start. Luckily, designing your packaging solution is both easy and fun.

Select A Box Style

To begin, you’ll want to assess your needs and determine which custom box choice will best align with your products, shipping methods, and marketing goals. Does your operation almost exclusively use the USPS for delivery? Then you’ll want to design a custom mailer box. Are you planning to multiply your shipping output? Crafting a custom shipping box is likely your best bet. Hoping to gain recognition as a unique product offering in a crowded field? A specialty product box can achieve that for you quickly and confidently.  

Pick A Size

The next step of the process will be determining the sizes you will require. Make sure the sizes you pick coincide closely with the products inside; a pair of earrings arriving in a large shipping box will make your brand look slapdash, and will make consumers think you don’t care about presentation or how much they pay for shipping costs. If your brand ships differently sized products, make sure you plan to order custom boxes that will work for all of them. 

Custom Design Your Box

How do you put a logo on a box? If you’re working with a custom box solution expert like Print Bind Ship, they’ll be able to do it with ease. Whether you have an existing template, your own logo, or you’re starting from scratch, a custom box design expert will be able to translate your ideas into a great looking package. 

Benefits Of Using Custom Packaging

We’ve learned a lot about some of the marketing and packaging solutions that a custom box  creation can offer your brand. Here’s some other benefits to consider:

Reduced Delivery Costs

Are you using a one-size-fits-all approach to your shipping boxes, filling up the extra space with peanuts and filler? If you are, you’re losing money. It may sound counterintuitive, but customized boxes can save you money.  Most major carriers have switched to dimensional weight pricing (DIM), which calculates shipping costs on package volume rather than weight, allowing delivery trucks to maximize space. What does this mean for you? Anytime you use an oversized box to ship an item, you’re paying for wasted space.  

Protection For Specialty Items 

Shipping a small, fragile item in a box too large is risky, costly, and can result in a very unsatisfied customer when their item arrives broken or damaged. Designing custom boxes that are the right size for your products provides natural protection for the item, and a much classier presentation.  

Increased Brand Awareness

Admit it; you’ve been driving home from work and noticed an interesting package sitting at your neighbor’s door. Sometimes it’s a box style you’re familiar with and recognize immediately, like the distinctive red circles of the Target logo. Sometimes, it’s one you’ve never seen before. Just a few days ago I noticed a shipping box sitting at my neighbor’s door that had a beautiful array of botanical flowers printed on a bold black background, with the words fab, fit, fun embellished in stylized font on the side. What’s fab, fit, fun, I wondered, and why do they have such a cool box? Can you guess what I did when I pulled in my driveway? I googled fab, fit, fun on my phone and found out they’re a subscription health and beauty sample company, and signed up on the spot. Now THAT is compelling marketing!

Well-designed custom shipping boxes can also maximize your social media exposure. Did you know there’s over fifteen viral YouTube channels solely dedicated to the “unboxing experience”? Hosts order boxes from a variety of different eCommerce manufacturers and open the box step-by-step, rating the quality of the experience based on the customization of the boxes and packaging included. Exposure on one of these YouTube channels has been known to triple sales for the featured company OVERNIGHT. 

Consider this: Annual eCommerce sales are estimated to hit $4.5 trillion worldwide by 2021. Standing out in that densely populated crowd requires finding innovative methods to differentiate your brand. Custom shipping boxes demonstrate you care about the presentation of your product and deepens the connection your brand makes with its target audience.

How Much Does It Cost To Make A Custom Box?

Probably less than you think. Many variables factor into the overall cost: size, shape, material, quantity, and how much branding you want to include. It’s important to do your homework. Providers like Print Bind and Ship offer high quality products and design services for a reasonable cost, and will closely work with you to ensure you get the best ROI. 

Photo Credits:
• “What’s the Point of a Packaging Insert?” by rosariorosser licensing under CC BY 2.0
• “Rigid Cardboard Keyboard Packaging boxes with Sleeve side view five” by CustomPackaging licensing under CC BY-SA 2.0
• “Cardboard Invitation Boxes side view three” by CustomPackaging licensing under CC BY-SA 2.0